• News - North West - Zamfara
  • Updated: April 02, 2024

Zamfara Gov, Lawal, denies borrowing N14.26bn, faults DMO reports

Zamfara Gov, Lawal, denies borrowing N14.26bn, faults DMO re

The Zamfara State Governor, Dauda Lawal, has denied reports by the Debt Management Office (DMO) that his government borrowed the sum of N14.26 billion since assuming office on May 29, 2023.

Lawal was listed in a report by the DMO last week among 16 new governors who have borrowed funds both foreign and domestic creditors and high debt profile since assuming office.

In its sub-national domestic and external debts report released by the DMO as of December 30 and June 30, 2023, respectively, the debt management office stated that states like Plateau has a debt profile of N16.32bn; Rivers N7.07bn; Zamfara, N14.26bn; and the FCT, under the leadership of Nyesom Wike borrowed N6.75bn from domestic creditors.

The report added that Benue, Cross Rivers, Katsina, Niger, Plateau, Rivers, Zamfara, and the Federal Capital Territory, jointly borrowed N115.57bn from domestic creditors.

But in a statement issued on Monday by Lawal's Chief Press Secretary (CPS), Sulaiman Idris, the governor debunked the allegations that his administration borrowed any money nor applied for loans from the state Assembly or National Assembly since he was sworn into office.

Lawal added that he has also not approached the DMO for loan since the inception of his administration.

“We want to make a clarification on the position of the Debt Management Office report that the Zamfara State government borrowed N14.26 billion,” the statement said.

“Since assumption of office by
Governor Dauda Lawal on May 29, 2023, no domestic or external loans have been borrowed.

“It is important to note that the previous Zamfara State government floated a N20 billion bond but failed to collect the total amount.

“The immediate past government received N4 billion out of the N20 billion loan it requested for the Zamfara cargo airport project, though the funds were not utilized.

“Upon assuming office, we discovered that the payment terms made terminating the bond impossible without incurring a significant loss for the state.

“The balance of N16 billion out of the N20 billion borrowed by the past administration is the N14.26 billion captured by the Debt Management Office. The value is reduced due to inflation.

“The bond balance which is still in a government account, has not been used and it is being reserved for the airport project," the government explained. 

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